Hasen to receive Peck Senior Medal from Wabash College

Nation’s foremost expert on election law and the right to vote will deliver a lecture today


Wabash College welcomes Richard Hasen as the 2024 recipient of the David W. Peck Senior Medal for Eminence in the Law.

Hasen, a professor of law and political science at the UCLA School of Law, will present the Peck Lecture, “How Can We Safeguard American Democracy?” at 5 p.m. Thursday in the Fine Arts Center’s Salter Hall on the Wabash College campus.

He is the nation’s foremost expert about the law regarding elections and the right to vote. His op-eds regularly appear in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post and New York Times.

Hasen served in 2020 as a CNN Election Law Analyst and as an NBC News/MSNBC Election Law Analyst in 2022. He has provided commentary on NPR and PBS.

He also directs the UCLA Law School’s Safeguarding Democracy Project, which promotes research, collaboration, and advocacy aimed at ensuring continued free and fair elections in the United States, conducted in accordance with democratic norms and the rule of law. Built upon the premise that tackling issues of U.S. election integrity must be collaborative, the project brings together scholars, election administrators, legislators, lawyers, voting rights advocates, and concerned citizens to develop practical solutions to urgent problems.

Following the lecture, the College will host the Peck Dinner. Established in 1974, the Peck Dinner provides a unique opportunity for Wabash students interested in the law to meet lawyer alumni and to benefit from the wisdom of the Senior Peck Medal recipient. The event also recognizes student pre-law award winners.

“We are especially excited this year to welcome back to Wabash many prior Peck Medal winners to this Fiftieth Anniversary celebration of the Peck Dinner,” said Scott Himsel, Associate Professor of Political Science and Pre-Law Advisor.  “And we could have no better speaker in this contentious election year than Professor Rick Hasen.”

Hasen is an internationally recognized expert in election law, writing as well as in the areas of legislation and statutory interpretation, remedies, and torts. He is co-author of leading casebooks in election law and remedies.

From 2001-10, he was a founding co-editor of the quarterly peer-reviewed publication, “Election Law Journal” and is the author of over 100 articles on election law issues. He was elected to the American Law Institute in 2009 and serves as reporter and advisor on the ALI’s law reform project.

Hasen was named one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America by The National Law Journal in 2013, and one of the Top 100 Lawyers in California in 2005 and 2016 by the Los Angeles and San Francisco Daily Journal.

From 1994-97, Hasen taught at the Chicago-Kent College of Law and from 1998-2011 he taught at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, where he was named the William H. Hannon Distinguished Professor of Law in 2005. From 2011-22, Hasen was Chancellor’s Professor of Law and Political Science at the University of California, Irvine, and co-director of the Fair Elections and Free Speech Center. He was a visiting professor at UCLA Law twice before joining the faculty in 2022.

Hasen holds a B.A. from University of California, Berkeley, and a J.D., M.A., and Ph.D. from UCLA. After law school, Hasen clerked for the Honorable David R. Thompson of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, and then worked as a civil appellate lawyer at the Encino, California, firm Horvitz and Levy.

The Peck Lecture and Peck Dinner honor the memory of Judge David W. Peck, Wabash Class of 1922, a Harvard law graduate who founded the litigation department at Sullivan & Cromwell, served as Presiding Justice of the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court, and was a long-time member of the Wabash College Board of Trustees.